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January 3, 2014
Original Message From: Philippe Gondard
Sent Saturday December 28th 2013 2:45 AM to Dautrey@wcisp.com
Subject F Hight Oroville in France near Le Mans WWI.
I live in France near the town of Le Mans (250 km west of Paris.) By doing historical research on my area, I discovered an American graffiti on the wall of a church in a village called Louplande. We can read: “C.WA., the insignia of the 89th division F HIGHT OROVILLE CAL.” I looked for information on the 89th division, but I have not found anything on this F Hight from Oroville. I think it was a soldier of the WWI because there were many Americans soldiers in Le Mans area. You can see this graffiti on my blog. http://canton-la-suze-sur-sarth.over-blog.com/ this graffiti is in a village called Louplande where there was an American airfield in 1944. But I think that there is no relationship between this graffiti and the airfield in 1944.

In France, we prepare the centenary of the WWI and I would be very happy if you could have the history of the American Soldier. Thank you very much if you can help me.
Philippe Gonadard

Re: F Hight Oroville in France near Le Mans WWI
From: Daryl Autrey (dautrey@wcisp.com)
Date Saturday, December 28th, 2013 12:35 PM
Philippe, I was surprised by your intriguing email. We will do some local research to see if we can find anything on the soldier, or his family, who left his name in Louplande so many years ago. Also, we can appeal to the public through the local newspaper and hope for a response from someone who may remember the family. In any case you will hear back from me.

Thanks so much for bringing this fascinating historical item to our attention, and we will be in touch.
Daryl Autrey, Oroville Veterans Memorial Park Committee, Oroville, CA.

Along with the email was an ad for the 100 anniversary of WWI it reads:
En partenariat avec Phillippe Gondard de l’Association pour l’etude du partimoine sarthois.
Recherchons pour une exposition sur la vie locale 1914-1918 photos, journaux, cartes postales, correspondances Et personnes interessees par ce project… Collecte des documents Jeudi 5 Septembre 14th-17th Salle des Fetes Samedi 5 Octobre 10H-12H Mediatheque. Renselgnements a la Mairie Tel:02 43 77 39 49

Jeff’s words: “It appears CWA could actually be G.W.A and stands for the “Great War Association”. This part may have been added later? The Great War Association participates re-enactments and returning soldiers to battlefields. Perhaps he was there and returned to leave his mark? Perhaps The GWA was added later. Perhaps He went to Central Washington University C.WA! This is all speculation of course. It is interesting that the GWA or CWA part is fairly neat and the rest looks hurried... maybe an air raid siren rang… “

Stu’s Notes:
Unlike some of today’s wars, the French are very appreciative of what we did for them in the Great War, as it was called. Remember, WWI was not added until WWII came along 21 years later. They are starting their 100 year anniversary of the Great War. Ours will start in 2017, as that is the year we entered the War to help the French; remember they helped us tremendously in our Revolutionary War with England. Many of our young men went “over there” to fly for the French and English against the Germans. The life of a young pilot back then was sometimes numbered in days. Remember the “Red Barron” before he met his end. He shot down a large number of the French and English planes and remember they didn’t have parachutes going down almost always was sure death. Although sometimes when a pilot died in enemy Territory he would be given a very honorable funeral by the Pilots he was trying to kill just hours before. This somewhat carried on to WWII, it was much better to be captured when you went down behind German lines by the German Luft Waffe (Air force) that the Army or Civilians.

Well here we are in a New Year, soon our two parking lots will be almost completed the grass, bushes and trees should go in soon. The asphalt will have to wait until the weather warms up.

Sadly, we lost a man that did so much for Oroville and also for my research, “Buzz” Huntington. Through the years since our Oroville High School Days, I’ve known of him, but didn’t know him well. Then a few years ago he called me and said he had old Newspapers of Chico and Oroville and would I like them. I always said yes, so every so often he would call me when he found more. The Chico E. R. Papers gave me a lot of information about the Heroes of Butte county especially Chico, it added to our list of those that died also as the Mercury did not always get a story of some of the Chico Boys and vice versa. I know there are thousands of more stories in the E.R. of the War years if only I had someone to research. I need help on what the French words say. Daryl’s website opens Butte County to the World.